Employee Health Fund

Mateo has an ear infection and can’t afford to see a doctor because of their high deductible health plan. Since this is common in the store, Amy sets up a fake charity to help raise funds for Mateo to pay for a doctor’s visit. Jonah thinks this is preposterous and tries to setup a savings club that employees can use when they need it. After realizing how many pre-existing conditions his coworkers have, they realize that the $20 membership fee isn’t enough to cover all of their issues. These scenes serve as a good example of adverse selection since the sickest employees are more likely to sign up for the program since their healthcare costs outweigh the membership fee.

Consumer Choice & Behavioral

Worrying Too Much

In the previous season, a massive tornado destroyed Cloud 9. Earlier in the episode, the employees held a memorial for a coworker (Brett) who they believed passed away during the tornado. Dina, normally the most confident worker, is a bit freaked out by a rainstorm outside and suggests that they head to the storm shelter. Her risk tolerance seems to have shifted to becoming rather risk averse following the tornado strike. Preferences for risk can change and be context dependent. In this case, a traumatic event a few months earlier has made a large impact on Dina’s tolerance for risk.

Health Public Choice

The Life of an Insurance Fund

When Mateo gets sick, Jonah comes up with an insurance fund to help cover employee medical bills because the store does not offer health insurance. The team members join the plan because it only costs $20 each month, but Jonah has promised to pay previous medical bills. Jonah and Amy quickly find out each team member, especially Sandra, has a lot of pre-existing conditions and they realize that they can’t cover everyone’s costs at one time. The two try to break the two groups apart, but the members in the pre-existing condition group will have to pay significantly more to cover all their costs.